Fran Montano, Owner/Artistic Director

Fran Montano first arrived in Los Angeles over 30 years ago. He booked steady television roles on shows such as ER, Melrose Place, The Nanny, Married With Children, Days of Our Lives, The Young and the Restless, Sunset Beach, Becker, and many more. He was a series regular on the Showtime series Laughs and appeared in numerous films and commercials. He has performed in countless stage productions, and is well established in the Los Angeles independent theater and film communities, having been recognized with Artistic Director Achievement awards from the Los Angeles Valley Theater League, multiple Drama-Logue Awards, two Telly Awards, a Cine Golden Eagle Award, and an Emmy. Fran's background in acting, producing, theater and film makes him an ideal resource for actors in Los Angeles to find their own way toward authenticity and success in their craft and careers.

Fran’s teaching style is based on the famed Meisner Technique, as taught by the late Edward Kaye-Martin. Students receive the intensity and attention of a private acting coach in a group setting, and gain feedback from Fran to enhance their strengths and transcend their limitations. His reputation lies in finding and breaking actors’ blocks to discover the vein of gold that brings their work to life. The Work here includes more than classes and training, but also personal coaching, career planning, industry networking, talent showcases, and steady rehearsals and performances.


Irene Muzzy, Acting Coach

Armed with a passion for teaching and a weakness for Meisner, Irene Muzzy has been inspired by working for Fran Montano at The Actors Workout for three years. Irene has been working in Los Angeles as an actor, choreographer, director and teacher for 25 years. 

She has taught and directed for The American Academy of Dramatic Arts, Theater of Arts, Alexia Robinson, and Andrew Benne, at both Moment to Moment and The Los Angeles Acting Studio. 

She likes to work with actors who fully commit and prepare for every opportunity, which allows them to develop their full self and their personal qualities become part of their work.

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Rickie Peete, Acting Coach

Born in Florida, Rickie came to Los Angeles after spending most of his life in the Washington, DC area, where he taught acting at the Creative Freedom Arts Studio.

He is both a Screen Actors Guild and Actors Equity Association member whose background includes a recurring role on General Hospital and appearances in plays such as Crumbs from the Table of Joy, Fences, Radio Golf, The Old Settler, Porgy & Bess, The Meeting, Six Degrees of Separation, Member of the Wedding, The Exonerated, Hoodoo Love, and Pray to Ball.

Rickie is also a writer and director, having produced his own play, Obamanologues, Journey to the White House, here at AWS. He's been an active member of the AWS community since 2010.


Tanya Linette Smith, Acting Coach

Tanya has been working in Film, Television, and on stage since the mid-90’s. She has appeared on such shows as Party of Five, Grey’s Anatomy, The Thundermans, Beverly Hills 90210, City of Angels and Four Corners just to name a few. Her film credits include A Hole in the Paper Sky, Girl Crazy, Danika and The Recurring.

In 2014, she began to coach actors privately and on set. In 2017, she decided to teach small, intimate classes with the belief that actors truly flourish when observing and working alongside one another. Although coaching full time, Tanya continues to study and take various classes herself, as she believes one must never stop learning.

Stacy Ann Raposa, Theater Manager/Producing Director

Originally from the suburbs of Boston, Stacy is an actor, director, writer, producer and teacher who is thrilled to have found an artistic home at the Actors Workout Studio, where she became the Theater Manager in 2016. She earned her B.A. from USC's School of Theatre.

Having written, directed and produced theatre in L.A. for the better part of the last 2 decades, Stacy is also the creator of a program called Bare Naked Angels, in which she guides actors through a four month process, teaching them how to create a solo performance piece. She loves to create and encourage others to create.

She is a die-hard New England Patriots fan who loves Philosophy, Penguins, Tattoos, Motorcycles, Classic Chevys, Dali Paintings and Chocolate.